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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Greek Coins| ▸ |Geographic - All Periods| ▸ |Britain||View Options:  |  |  | 

Ancient Coins of Britain

Before the Roman invasion, Britain was populated by Celtic tribes with well-established cultural and economic links with continental Europe. Although Julius Caesar conducted the first Roman campaign in Britain in 55 B.C., the conquest did not begin until A.D. 43, during the reign of Claudius. The British tribes initially opposed the Roman legions, but by 84 the Romans had decisively conquered southern Britain and had pushed into what is now southern Scotland. In 122 they fortified the northern border with Hadrian's Wall, which spanned what is now Northern England. In 142 Roman forces pushed north again and began construction of the Antonine Wall, but they retreated back to Hadrian's Wall after only twenty years. Following the conquest, native Britons were subject to the Roman governors but mostly kept their land, and a distinctive Romano-British culture emerged. The Roman Empire retained control until its departure about A.D. 430.Romanization of Britain

Anglo-Gallic, Henry VI de Lancastre, King of France and England, 1422 - 1453

|France|, |Anglo-Gallic,| |Henry| |VI| |de| |Lancastre,| |King| |of| |France| |and| |England,| |1422| |-| |1453||grand| |blanc| |aux| |cus|NEW
On 12 December 1422, each mint was assigned a mint-mark to be placed at the beginning of the obverse and reverse legends. The omission of the pellet beside the root mint-mark was ordered 17 July 1432.

In 1422, the year old king of England inherited the French throne from his mad grandfather Charles VI of France; the iconography of this type represents the unification of the two nations. Ten years later Joan of Arc would make an appearance which would eventually loosen the English grip on France until by 1436 only Normandy and part of Maine remained in Henry's control.
WO110516. Silver grand blanc aux cus, Elias 285a (R), Ciani 602, Duplessy 445, Lafaurie 449, SCBC-SII 8166; root mintmark, no pellet, VF, toned, weight 3.256 g, maximum diameter 28.0 mm, die axis 0o, Le Mans mint, 17 Jul 1432 - 1448; obverse (root) FRANCORVm: ET: ANGLIE: REX (King of France and England), shields of France (on left) and England (on right), side by side, hERICVS above; reverse (root) SIT: nOmEN: DnI: BENEDICVm (Blessed be the name of the Lord), Latin cross, fleur-de-lis to left, leopard left on right, hERICVS below; ex Goron Andreas Singer; rare; $320.00 (323.20)


Belgic Celts in Britain, Atrebates, Verica, c. 10 - 43 A.D.

|Celtic| |&| |Tribal|, |Belgic| |Celts| |in| |Britain,| |Atrebates,| |Verica,| |c.| |10| |-| |43| |A.D.||quarter| |stater|
At the time of Caesar's invasion of Britain, the Atrebates, "the settlers," covered Sussex, Berkshire, west Surrey, parts of Hampshire, north-east Wiltshire.
SL86748. Gold quarter stater, Little Horse Rearing type; Bean VERC1-2, Cottam ABC 1199, Van Arsdell 466-1, Hobbs 1179, SCBC 124, NGC EF, strike 5/5, surface 3/5 (2400434-001), weight 1.19 g, maximum diameter 9.2 mm, die axis 225o, Calleva mint, c. 10 - 40 A.D.; obverse COM F in linear rectangle tablet, pellet in annulet above and below; reverse horse prancing right, VI above, exergual line below; ex Stephen Album auction 21 (15 Jan 2015), lot 1 (realized $900 plus fees); NGC| Lookup; SOLD


Celtic, Ambiani, North East Gaul, c. 58 - 55 B.C., Gallic War Issue

|Celtic| |&| |Tribal|, |Celtic,| |Ambiani,| |North| |East| |Gaul,| |c.| |58| |-| |55| |B.C.,| |Gallic| |War| |Issue||stater|
The Ambiani occupied the Somme valley in northern France. These uniface Gallic War staters were struck to fund the war against Julius Caesar in Gaul. The blank obverse is often ascribed to a need for speed in striking this emergency war coinage. There are, however, more than a few other similar uniface Celtic coin types and one blank side would do little to speed up the mint. More likely, they just found one plain side and one detailed side "nice enough." This type is often found in Britain, many of which may have been carried there by Celtic mercenaries retreating after Caesar's victories.
SH85134. Gold stater, Delestre-Tache 241, Cottam ABC 16, Van Arsdell 52-1, Castelin 289, De la Tour 8710, SCBC 11, EF, scyphate, light scratches, weight 6.084 g, maximum diameter 17.4 mm, obverse plain bulge; reverse disjointed "Celticized" horse right, crescents and pellets around; ex Coins of Antiquity (Hillsborough, NC); SOLD


Celts, Atrebates and Regni, British Tribes, South of the Thames, c. 60 - 20 B.C.

|Celtic| |&| |Tribal|, |Celts,| |Atrebates| |and| |Regni,| |British| |Tribes,| |South| |of| |the| |Thames,| |c.| |60| |-| |20| |B.C.||quarter| |stater|
At the time of Caesar's invasion of Britain, the Atrebates, "the settlers," covered Sussex, Berkshire, west Surrey, parts of Hampshire, north-east Wiltshire. The Regni, originally Regini, "the stiff ones," occupied Sussex in Roman times.
SH01358. Gold quarter stater, uninscribed 'Bognor Cogwheel' type; Cottam ABC 509, SCBC 48, gVF, scyphate, weight 1.39 g, maximum diameter 13.0 mm, die axis 180o, obverse extremely stylized head of Zeus or Apollo; reverse horse right with triple tail, floral sun above, cog wheel below, wheel right; a beautiful example of Celtic art; SOLD







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REFERENCES|

Allen, D. Catalogue of Celtic Coins in the British Museum. (London, 1987-1990).
Allen, D. The Coins of the Ancient Celts. (Edinburgh, 1980).
Coins of England & the United Kingdom, Standard Catalogue of British Coins. (London, -).
Cottam, E., et al. Ancient British Coins. (Chris Rudd, Norfolk, UK, 2010).
de Jersey, P. Celtic Coinage in Britain. (London, 1996).
de la Tour, H. Atlas de monnaies Gauloises. (Paris, 1892).
Hobbs, R. British Iron Age Coins in the British Museum. (London, 1996).
Nash, D. Coinage in the Celtic World. (London, 1987).
Sear, D. Greek Coins and Their Values, Vol. 1: Europe. (London, 1978).
Sills, J. Gaulish and Early British Gold Coinage. (London, 2003).
Van Arsdell, R. Celtic Coinage of Britain. (London, 1989).


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